LA Kings 2012 First Round Pick Tanner Pearson Just Missed Being a 7th Round Pick In 2011

FROZEN ROYALTY EXCLUSIVE: Did you know that, if not for one, critical decision back in 2011, Los Angeles Kings rookie sensation Tanner Pearson could easily still be toiling away in the minor leagues, getting limited ice time (and limited development) on the third or fourth line with the Manchester Monarchs of the American Hockey League, and that he, and the Kings, might not have won the 2014 Stanley Cup Championship because of that? Indeed, that was very nearly the case. Part 1 of a two-part series.


LA Kings left wing Tanner Pearson, shown here celebrating the team’s 2014 Stanley Cup Championship with his family on the ice at Staples Center in Los Angeles on June 13, 2014.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: Gann Matsuda/FrozenRoyalty.net

EL SEGUNDO, CA — During the Los Angeles Kings’ remarkable 26-game run through the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs, culminating in their second Stanley Cup Championship in the last three seasons, rookie left wing Tanner Pearson seemed to come out of nowhere, scoring four goals and contributing eight assists for twelve points, while playing on a line with right wing Tyler Toffoli and center Jeff Carter to make up what became known as the “That 70’s Line.”

That line gave the Kings a whole new look up front, and, in particular, gave the Chicago Blackhawks fits during the 2014 Western Conference Final—they had no answer for them.

For his part, Pearson used speed that had not been seen from him prior to the post-season to get to loose pucks and set up his line mates time and time again. In the end, the result was becoming a Stanley Cup Champion at the age of 21, and in just his first season in the National Hockey League.

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No Surprises on LA Kings 2014-15 Opening Night Roster: Andreoff, McNabb Make The Cut

AUDIO: Story includes audio interviews with Brayden McNabb and head coach Darryl Sutter.


LA Kings forward Andy Andreoff
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/FrozenRoyalty.net

EL SEGUNDO, CA — The Los Angeles Kings have finished their 2014-15 pre-season schedule, they have closed up shop on training camp, and after all the ice chips settled, there will be no surprises whatsoever on their 2014-15 opening night roster, which will be released later today.

In fact, the only real “question,” if you can call it that, was whether or not two young players, left wing/center Andy Andreoff and defenseman Brayden McNabb, would make the big club’s roster out of training camp.

But as previously reported in this space, both were a lock to make the Kings’ opening night roster, making the “question” pretty much a moot point.

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LA Kings Have A Power Forward In The Making In Michael Mersch

AUDIO AND VIDEO: Story includes a video interview with Michael Mersch and an audio interview with Los Angeles Kings assistant general manager Rob Blake.


LA Kings left wing prospect Michael Mersch,
shown here playing for their AHL affiliate,
the Manchester Monarchs.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: Blake Gumprecht

EL SEGUNDO, CA — For many, many years, the Los Angeles Kings were grossly deficient in the areas of drafting and developing young players. Of course, they were so bad at drafting players that their dreadful player development usually didn’t matter.

But all that has changed since President/General Manager Dean Lombardi joined the club in April 2006. He quickly made drafting and development one of the top priorities of the franchise. That focus has paid off in spades, and now, the Kings are now one of the top teams in the National Hockey League when it comes to drafting and developing their young prospects.

Evidence of that can be seen on the 2013-14 roster, which includes the likes of Drew Doughty, Trevor Lewis, Alec Martinez, Tanner Pearson, Tyler Toffoli and Slava Voynov, among others, all of whom are homegrown players—some are late-round draft picks— who are now filling significant roles, and it doesn’t stop there.

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2013-14 Was A Solid Development Year For LA Kings Goaltender Prospect Patrik Bartosak

LA Kings goaltender prospect Patrik Bartosak
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/FrozenRoyalty.net

EL SEGUNDO, CA — Around this time last year, Los Angeles Kings goaltender prospect Patrik Bartosak wowed spectators with a stellar performance during the second game of the 2013 rookie tournament against the Anaheim Ducks, making several difficult saves, bailing out his teammates time and time again.

Bartosak led the rookie Kings to a 3-2 shootout win over the rookie Ducks, allowing one goal on 26 shots in two periods of work. But even though Mathias Niederberger played in the third period (a planned move), Bartosak faced the most difficult of the Ducks’ scoring chances, most of which came during a very poor first period by the Kings rookies, who were badly out-skated, outworked and out-chanced.

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LA Kings Believe The Time Is Now For Forward Prospect Andy Andreoff

LA KINGS PROSPECT WATCH: Throughout the summer, Frozen Royalty has taken a look at several of the Los Angeles Kings’ young prospects. In the final installment of this series, the focus is on 2011 third round selection left wing/center Andy Andreoff. Audio interviews with Andreoff and Kings assistant general manager Rob Blake are also included.


LA Kings center/left wing prospect Andy Andreoff.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/FrozenRoyalty.net

LOS ANGELES — For 23-year old left wing/center prospect Andy Andreoff, if the Los Angeles Kings have their way, his time is now, or at least, in a few weeks.

“His contract situation has a lot to do with that, in that he would [have to clear] waivers—there would be 29 teams lined up to get ahold of him,” said Kings assistant general manager Rob Blake. “It’s a big summer for him. He was sat down, early in the summer. We explained the scenario that this is the time to push to really get on this team.”

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